EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

World/National News

June 6, 2014

GM ousts 15 employees over ignition-switch scandal

(Continued)

Barra has already named a new safety chief and pledged to work quickly through a backlog of potential recalls. As a result, the automaker has recalled a record 15.8 million cars and trucks in North America so far this year.

In addition, GM has put procedures in place to make sure that departments communicate and that safety issues get reported to the top. Barra said people who don’t think such problems are being addressed should contact her.

Barra, who testified on Capitol Hill in April but deflected many questions by saying she was waiting for the results of Valukas’ investigation, is certain to be called back.

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said she intends to hold a hearing this summer.

“I won’t be letting GM leadership, or federal regulators, escape accountability for these tragedies,” she said in a statement. “The families of those affected deserve no less.”

Barra, a 34-year GM veteran, told 1,000 employees gathered at the automaker’s suburban Detroit technical center that the report was “enormously painful.”

“I want you to never forget it,” she said in a speech that was also broadcast to the company’s 212,000 employees worldwide.

___

Associated Press writer Jeff Baenen in Minneapolis contributed to this report.

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